Reddit Reddit reviews The Harvest of Sorrow: Soviet Collectivization and the Terror-Famine

We found 10 Reddit comments about The Harvest of Sorrow: Soviet Collectivization and the Terror-Famine. Here are the top ones, ranked by their Reddit score.

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10 Reddit comments about The Harvest of Sorrow: Soviet Collectivization and the Terror-Famine:

u/Dwade · 3 pointsr/todayilearned

In answer to your specific question, rather than muddle through an economic analysis of collectivization and the specific cultural values unique to the Kulaks in Urkaine, I'm going to highly recommend Harvest of Sorrow, which I believe will more provide you with satisfying data.

TL;DR version of the book: There was a time when there was an actual debate over whether Stalin was an economic idiot or a mass murderer, but that's no longer the case. He might have been an idiot, but it took a great deal of intentionality to inflict this kind of terror on a populace that Stalin felt stood in the way of his great Soviet state.

Edit: I accidentally a word

u/Kai_Daigoji · 2 pointsr/DebateCommunism

You linked a historian who is standing in opposition to the rest of his field. Academia operates by consensus.

But okay, have some sources:

Robert Conquest: The Harvest Of Sorrow: Soviet Collectivisation and the Terror-Famine

Hadzewycz, Roma; Zarycky, George B.; Kolomayets, Martha: The Great Famine in Ukraine: The Unknown Holocaust.

James E. Mace: Soviet Man-Made Famine in Ukraine

There are sources in Ukrainian and Russian as well. Tauger is completely on his own here.

u/SuperbusMaximus · 2 pointsr/worldnews

I know its unlikely you will read it, but If you would ever like to look outside the cave you seem to have got yourself stuck in and see the light; reading this book would be a good start.

Oh and you can fuck right off with that fascist labeling shit. My grandparents on my mother's and father's side fought fascists in Europe, and I am half Slavic, Nazi's weren't very big fans of Slavs especially Slavs with a Jewish background.

u/plasticplan · 1 pointr/history
u/Lash_ · 1 pointr/freefolk

Of course I'll read some books. Perhaps you should do some reading as well. May I make a few suggestions?

u/blobjim · 1 pointr/SeattleWA

There is literally no mention of pogroms in the article you listed. Pogroms were only committed by the Russian Empire. Lenin and Stalin were also strong opponents of anti-semitism (I think Stalin said anti-semites should be executed).

>Population transfer in the Soviet Union may be divided into the following broad categories: deportations of "anti-Soviet" categories within the population, who were often classified as "enemies of the workers"; deportations of nationalities; labor force transfer; and organised migrations in opposite directions in order to fill the ethnically cleansed territories. In most cases their destinations were underpopulated and remote areas (see Involuntary settlements in the Soviet Union).
>Population transfer in the Soviet Union led to millions of deaths that resulted from the hardships that it inflicted upon its victims.

Yes, lots of people died, but you're not going to get accurate numbers because almost every source is from a capitalist/western point of view. Note that the death toll in the above Wikipedia quote comes from The Harvest of Sorrow: Soviet Collectivization and the Terror-Famine written by a British-American at Stanford. Either way, these programs clearly could in no way be classified as mass murder even if they were state violence. Also note that feudal Russia regularly had famines.

Lastly, most of this stuff about the USSR (with the exception of some of the gulags I think) ends after WWII when anti-Stalin leaders came to power.

u/wiggles89 · 1 pointr/todayilearned

What happened in the USSR during the late 1920s and early 1930s was very similar, but has been considered more systematic. Stalin declared a period of dekulakization in which he wished to eliminate the peasant class, spread socialism to the country side, and collectivize farming.

While it can be argued to what extent Mao Zedong actually knew people were starving, the party definitely knew that a lot of people were going hungry. Stalin on the other hand also included executions, imprisonment, deportations (to Siberia as well as other locations), and labor camps on top of the famine caused by the collectivization of farms. It was certainly more systematic in causing death and by the end of dekulakization about 14.5 million peasants were dead.

Harvest of Sorrow is both a well written and extremely well researched book on the subject.

u/A_Soporific · 1 pointr/changemyview

> Computerization is definitely no panacea, and this is the one issue (albeit one that I don't think is universal) that can not be overlooked. So yes, that political point is very relevant here. That planning proposal I described absolutely requires a free flow of information and universal access to computer systems, and this was politically impossible in the USSR under Brezhnev. Even access to photocopying equipment was strictly controlled for fear of the dissemination of dissent.

The problem is that a central bureau needs to have the power to make people keep to the plan. I mean, what's the point in telling someone to make 100 when they just go ahead to make 200 anyways? So, the bureau and central planners need the power to reward and punish as necessary. This goes back to the root of this whole thing, how can anyone be sure that they are being punished for the greater good instead of for the good of the bureau/government? That's a pretty big gap in trust, even if everything is on the level.

I don't really know how a socialist system would fix that. You don't have to worry about that so much in a Capitalistic one because it says on the tin that they're out for themselves and that it's down to competition.

>I went into (some) detail about this with GnosticGnome. There would still be a market in consumer goods, with all the 'signals' from which would be used to guide the allocation of them. There is no reason why a socialist economy can not have market clearing prices to balance the supply of goods and the demand, by which shortages and surpluses can be avoided. So, appearance of shortage (excess of demand), increase in price. You cause consumers to reduce consumption of good in question, available supply goes up. An appearance of a surplus? Fall in price, encouraging consumers to increase demand for it.

The problem is that once you start taking the control away from the plan and giving it to things that aren't the plan, why take the central planning seriously? I mean, if you aren't changing the defining element of the system, then are you changing the system at all? I mean, how can it be central planning if the central plan merely reports on what would have happened if there wasn't a central plan?

> The difference between a market system and that planned system is this: once that pattern of final output of goods is decided,

There is no final pattern. Every moment someone dies and someone else is born. Every moment someone changes their minds on something, or matures in some way. Who the consumers are today are not who they were yesterday or who they will be tomorrow. You will never hit equilibrium because if it takes time then you will be too late as someone did something somewhere and the ideal quantity and price are now different.

> the allocation of inputs to support that pattern are computed centrally and the required means of production and labor allocated by the planning agency. The enterprises that produce it are not capable of possessing, buying or selling the factories they own.

I don't really know what this is supposed to mean. There's supposed to be a market for finished goods, but not a market for labor or capital? What makes labor anything other than a service? What makes capital anything other than a good? Do we force them to work or produce the tools that make other things possible? Or do we reward them for making the "better" choice like the market currently does?

Why focus so heavily on factories? In fact, with recent developments in 3D printing and robotics we might be looking at a future where there are no factories because things can be produced at the site of consumption from digitally shared plans using standardized raw materials. Assembly lines are great and all, but they aren't the be all and end all of production, the future holds new and different opportunities and systems. Focusing exclusively on last-century industrial processes will only hurt us in the long run.

> I encourage you to look into The Shanghai Textbook. Radical Chinese economists developed a pretty critical look at the Soviet-style of development and economic thought that bashed them for collectivizing the countryside at the expense of the peasantry. About how they focused too much emphasis on heavy industry, so that light industry and agriculture were neglected.

I've read a number of other texts that dealt with the same point coming from different angles. I read The Harvest of Sorrow: Soviet Collectivization and the Terror-Famine by Robert Conquest fairly recently. It seems to be well researched, but it is important that it was published in 1987 and there are better sources available.

There is a lot written about collectivization, most of it points out that it disastrously fails when imposed from the outside. The benefits of collective ownership in an agricultural setting are dubious at best, and whatever gains that are made by the virtues of the system are irrevocably lost if there isn't buy in on the ground floor.

One size does not fit all. Industrial structure doesn't lend itself to agriculture.

> All I can say here is not necessarily so.

It might not be foreordained, but that's certainly how the practical examples we have work out. Either it decomposes into something more akin to market capitalism or it catastrophically fails due to the accumulation of errors and the inability of local individuals to make the necessary adjustments to satisfy needs.

u/Karl___Marx · -1 pointsr/Destiny

What are you trying to do here? I give you a brief glimpse into the mind of a mad man and you expect me to explain why he doesn't write about genocide?

Most serious historical accounts of what happened in Ukraine reach the conclusion that there was enough food to prevent starvation (despite the decline in output due to the brutal transition to collectivization), but the foodstuffs were withheld essentially to allow for ethnic cleansing. If you seriously want a full picture, read this book.

u/Donkey_of_Balaam · -2 pointsr/DebateReligion

>Nice cherry picking. In the U.S., that ignores The New Deal, the creation of the modern social safety net, Medicare, Medical, the public school system, and various other secular progressive achievements over the last 50-60 years.

Shame on me to focus on minor glitches rather than the glorious public school system and the progressive eugenics movement.

>The lessons from evil theocracies are well learned

What about the lessons from awesome ones? You can't seriously maintain they're all the same. I couldn't care less about Christian conservatives. The religion is imploding. This is a post-Christian America. Given the crap from the race-realist right, you might miss the religious right.